Elizabeth Aird & Her Fishnets RevisitedTuesday, January 10, 2017
Yesterday I had lunch with my friend John Lekich, an old time journalist, freelance writer and novelist. While paying a pleasant visit to Barbara-Jo's Books to Cooks the subject of restaurant critics came up and Lekich mentioned one about the Vancouver Sun's former restaurant critic (and many other things she did) Elizabeth Aird. Lekich reminded me of a sore point and that is that his favourite photo of Aird was one that I took ( blog below and picture above) where the Vancouver Sun, alas lost all my original slides. But in spite of that sore point it was pleasant to remember something from our city's receding memory before constant change became the alienating mantra that is in our face now.
And having Leckich's face on the other side at our booth at Fable Diner on Broadway (at Main) was also a most pleasant experience. It sure beats Facebook.
Elizabeth Aird & Her FishnetsThursday, June 29, 2006
Today I read John Mackie's obituary. Sun reporter and columnist Elizabeth Aird is dead at 50. Of her, editor-in-chief Patricia Graham says,"Elizabeth was quick-witted and clever. Often frustrating but always endearing, she was a marvellous writer who had a sweet nature but wrote with the stong voice of a truly independent thinker."
I don't know of anybody who would find fault with that. I would only add that Elizabeth was the sexiest reporter that ever worked for the Vancouver Sun. Not only that, she had the finest legs, too! One of reporter John Armstrong's first pieces for the Sun, in the middle 90s, was one on the vintage furniture store on West Pender (now gone) Metropolitan Home. To illustrate the article Armstrong convinced Aird to pose in fishnets on a swank lounge chair. That photograph refreshed my libido for weeks.
It was at the end of March 2000 that I received a phone call from Jim Sutherland, then editor of the Vancouver Sun's Saturday magazine, Mix. He had written an essay in defence of Vancouver Magazine's annual restaurant awards. He wanted me to take a picture to illustrate the concept of an anonymus restaurant critic. I thought I heard wrong when he told me that Elizabeth Aird had volunteered for the shot. I asked him to repeat that. When I showed up at the Sun newsroom Aird looked at me and told me, "I only found out about this this morning. There is no time to buy fishnets." I could only stare at her black stockings and pumps as we went downstairs to Aqua Riva.
Sometimes my filing system works and sometimes not. I found Elizabeth's picture and article under Restaurant Critic but there were no slides or negs in the folder. But this will do even though I recall that the racier ones were vetted by the Sun photo editor. If anything (if you notice she is writing in a notepad under the table) this picture to me conveys Aird's joy for life.